Risks of a lung transplant
It’s important to understand the risks of a lung transplant
- Not every patient feels better after having a lung transplant
- A lung transplant is major surgery and you’ll need to take strong medicines afterwards, which can cause problems
- The risks of transplantation can broadly be divided into early risks and longer-term risks
- All donated organs have the potential to carry risks to your health
Understanding your risks
Most patients who have a lung transplant do very well. In general, the risks of the transplant are lower than the risks posed by your lung disease. However, lung transplantation is not a cure and it’s important that be aware of the risks as well as the benefits. This will help you to understand transplantation and to be better prepared if there are problems after the transplant.
For a lung transplant, each risk is said to be either: very common, common, uncommon or rare. This is based on the number of lung transplant patients that have been affected by the risk.
|Risk level||Number of lung transplant patients affected|
|Very common||More than 10 in 100|
|Common||Between 1 in 100 and 10 in 100|
|Uncommon||Between 1 in 1000 and 1 in 100|
|Rare||Fewer than 1 in 1000|
Example: Very common risk
The image below is a visual representation of a complication that affects 15 in 100 patients.
Example: Common risk
The image below is a visual representation of a complication that affects 2 in 100 patients.
Speak to your lung doctor about your risks
This information summarises the risks for most patients. But your transplant journey is unique. Your lung doctor will be able to discuss in more detail the risks you might face.